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American Airlines, United Airlines, and more: Study says these are the most unreliable airlines for holiday travel

Study says these are the most unreliable airlines for holiday travel

An American Airlines plane in flight with clouds in the background
max lewandowski/Pexels / Pexels

Airlines, despite being essential components of modern travel, are often criticized for their perceived unreliability. Delays, cancellations, overbooking, and lost baggage are a few of the most common issues when it comes to air travel. Unfortunately, these problems only tend to increase during the holiday season.

With all of the uncertainty surrounding air travel during the holidays, many people wonder which airlines are better than others when it comes to reliability. Compare the Market recently conducted a study comparing major airlines to determine which companies are the least reliable. United, JetBlue, and American Airlines are among the few of the least reliable airlines to travel with.

American Airlines

American Airlines has been ranked as the least reliable airline in the United States, with 2,183 yearly flight problems recorded, 157 cases of oversold tickets, and 1,476 issues with refunds. American is the largest airline in the world when measured by scheduled passengers, completing nearly 6,800 flights per day to 350 different destinations. 

United Airlines

Headquartered at the Willis Tower in Chicago, Illinois, United Airlines, Inc. comes in as the second-least reliable airline in the country. United Airlines topped the list for lost and delayed baggage, with 763 cases of lost, delayed, or damaged bags over a 12-month period. The airline reported 1,538 total flight problems, including 470 cases of misinformation on fares and 22 cases of discrimination. 

Spirit Airlines

Next on the list is Spirit Airlines, which is North America’s largest ultra-low-cost carrier. This airline is known for last-minute cancellations and overbooked flights, causing dozens of disruptions every day. Spirit had a total of 1,102 flight problems recorded over the year.

JetBlue Airways

JetBlue Airlines is another low-cost airline that operates around 1,000 flights every day. The airline comes in as the fourth-least reliable airline, with 1,167 total flight problems recorded within a year. Despite these troubles, JetBlue recently announced several new flight paths from the United States to Europe, which will begin service in 2024. 

Frontier Airlines

Frontier Airlines ranks as the fifth-least reliable airline in the United States, with 1,097 recorded flight problems. Frontier is an ultra-low-budget airline, so many customers understand the risk they are taking when booking with the airline.

exterior of LAX airport with multiple grounded airplanes
466654/Pixabay / Pixabay

Choose your airline wisely 

Other airlines on the list include Delta Air Lines (937 flight problems), Southwest Airlines (963 flight problems), and Lufthansa (167 flight problems). 

The airlines that are ranked as the most reliable all serve international destinations. Aerolineas Argentina, which is Argentina’s national carrier, received just five complaints over a 12-month period. Air New Zealand, Air Transat, Azerbaijan Airlines, and Gol Airlines also topped the list of the most reliable airlines.

No matter where you are heading this holiday season, make sure you do your research before purchasing a plane ticket. If you are hesitant about your journey, then consider purchasing travel insurance so you are covered for any travel delays or flight issues.

Amanda Teague
Amanda, an accomplished freelance writer with four years of experience, is a dedicated explorer of both the world and the…
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